Days before former FERC Chairman Norman Bay's resignation takes effect, the agency said Gulf South Pipeline Co. LP can proceed with construction of an interconnect and meter station in Texas, an integral part of the company's Coastal Bend Header Project.

In a letter order issued Monday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [CP15-517] granted the company permission to proceed with construction of the Gulf South Index 129 Interconnect Meter and Regulatory (M&R) Station, which will be located at milepost 16.17 of the 65-mile pipeline, which will deliver liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Freeport LNG Development LP's export terminal near Freeport, TX. The facilities will be located in Wharton County, TX.

"We have determined the requested facilities and use of these workspace modifications would not affect cultural resources or federally threatened and endangered species and Gulf South has received the appropriate federal authorizations," wrote John Wisniewski, environmental project manager for FERC.

The facilities were approved last June, and FERC reviewed an implementation plan and supplemental information filed by Gulf South in August and November of last year, respectively.

FERC issued a favorable environmental assessment for the Coastal Bend Header Project one year ago. Gulf South, a unit of Boardwalk Pipeline Partners LP, is building the 36-inch diameter pipeline to serve the Freeport terminal and plans to expand and modify some of its existing facilities in southeast Texas. The project's anticipated start date is 2018.

Last week, Bay announced that he would resign from FERC after Acting Chairman Cheryl LaFleur was named to replace him at the head of the Commission. His resignation as a commissioner will take effect on Friday, leaving the Commission with only two commissioners -- not enough for a quorum to vote on major projects.